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Acta Paediatr. 2008 May;97(5):574-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.2008.00745.x.

Patent ductus arteriosus evaluation by serial echocardiography in preterm infants.

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Department of Paediatrics, National Maternity Hospital, Dublin, Ireland.



Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) is associated with morbidity and mortality in premature neonates.


The effect of serial echocardiography performed by a neonatologist and early targeted medical PDA treatment was evaluated and compared to historical controls. One hundred ninety-two infants <1,500 g were included and 45 infants had a PDA.


Serial echocardiography allowed significantly earlier identification and treatment of PDA versus awaiting the evolution of clinical signs. Severe intraventricular haemorrhage and ventilator days were significantly decreased in the studied cohort following the introduction of echocardiography. In addition, hospital stay was also reduced in the non-PDA group and other outcomes were unchanged.


Serial echocardiography for PDA evaluation, performed by a neonatologist trained in echo, may reduce morbidity in preterm infant.

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